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tv   State of the Union  CNN  September 5, 2010 12:00pm-1:00pm EDT

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credibility. my take is that kind of tactic should be used as a last resort when the company's top executives are refusing to talk. what she did was good television but it was unnecessary. craigslist this weekend took down the adult services category in the u.s. not clear whether the change is permanent. that's it for this labor day weekend of "reliable sources." join us next sunday morning at 11:00 a.m. eastern for another critical look at the media. "state of the union with candy crowley" begins right now. >> labor day. summer's last vacation. come tuesday almost 15 million people will wake up with no work to return to. the bureau of labor statistics reports another 54,000 jobs were lost in august. unemployment ticking up to 9.6%. not as bad as experts expected but still grim news for a grim country. just 18% of americans describe economic conditions as somewhat
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good or very good according to a recent cnn poll. 81% say somewhat poor or poor. and even in a prime time address meant as a victory lap for the u.s. drawdown in iraq, president obama signaled his understanding of what most americans have on their minds. >> our most urgent task is to restore our economy and put millions of americans who lost their jobs back to work. >> after 19 months in office, it's been easier said than done. today we look for answers with richard trumka and todd mccracken. then, 58 days until midterm elections. crunch time in politics. with the national journal's ron rournier, "time" magazine's michael duffy and elisabeth bumiller of "the new york times." i'm candy crowley. this is "state of the union." facing the prospect of
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disastrous congressional elections, the obama administration trying to fuel recovery is considering a package of business tax cuts. the president is expected to announce an extension of the research and development tax credit. other proposals under discussion to help small businesses include a temporary payroll tax holiday. over half of all private sector employees work in small businesses. the idea is that those tax cuts might push those businesses into hiring again. joining me now to discuss these proposals and more, thank you very much richard trumka president of afl-cio and todd mccracken, president of the small business association. let me step back before we talk specifics. it struck me reading the research that every major paper has analysis that is just kind of heart wrenching about what the economy is going to do. one came from "the l.a. times" talking about jobs.
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the nation's job deficit is to deep that a powerful recovery would leave large numbers of americans out of work for years. experts say with growth now weakening analyst are doubtful that companies will boost payroll significantly any time soon. let me get you both to start out by giving me your version of the state of the economy. >> start with me? >> sure. >> it's obviously a tough economy for working people right now. and this labor day workers are actually looking for economic patriots. people that will help create good jobs that will stop the outsourcing, that will help build retirement security and they're looking for people to do that. but they have a lot of hope because the foundation has been built. for eight years we got worked over by the bush administration and now we have an administration that's working with us instead so there's some hope. the foundation has been built.
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we've raeined in wall street. we started the process. >> i think this is a tough sell and i want to ask you about specifics. from your viewpoint representing small businesses, how do they feel with the state of the economy? >> it's pretty grim out there. a lot of small businesses do see small opportunities but most of them are kind of in a stagnant or even a downward growth piece right now. the thing we need that we need the most is access to credit and capital for small companies enable them to take advantage when it does happen. unfortunately there were some proposals on capitol hill that would help with that and they have been stuck in the mud and we really hope we can move forward on those things in the next few days. >> the idea is that would help workers, small businesses employ so many people across the country. let's just talk a minute about the idea of making permanent the
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research and development tax credit, which presumably would presume more innovation in the workplace, loosening credit. these are a number of things the administration is looking at. in what way do you sort of think that this might be -- is this really a matter of changing policy or doing something or is this a matter of a business cycle that is just going through the ropes and has gone back down a bit and moving on its own. >> this isn't a business cycle. this is the result of 30 years of failed policy. in this country we tried to say that we would have a low wage, high consumption society and that doesn't work because the society, our economy is built by consumer spending and consumers can't spend when they don't have money. >> doesn't that argue then for tax cuts all around. we're talking about this at a roll tax cut for small businesses but how about as republicans argue a tax cut for everybody so this they can buy the things that small businesses
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are selling? >> when you give tax cuts to the very rich, they don't buy much. that's what happens. that's what resulted in the deficit in the last 30 years. more tax cuts were given to the rich. they didn't give them to the people that needed it. we've been in the forefront trying to rein in wall street and say we do need more credit for small and mid size businessed so that they can start creating jobs. all of that will help but it may not be enough even the holiday on taxes may not be enough. the research and development tax credit may not be enough. we need to create demand. the best way to create demand is to put money in people's pockets. we need to invest in jobs because without jobs you won't get that demand. >> i think that we're at the end of a bubble. this whole thing was created by a bubble that had lots of factors that came into why it was created in the first place. it is going to take time to grow our way out of this. it does not mean we can't put into place key policy objectives that will help with that and will speed that up a little bit.
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and putting money in the pockets of both consumers and small business people so they can take advantage of opportunities when they come along is crucial. >> you know what's going on out there. we are hearing from more and more people showing up in the polling that people ink, wait a second, we spent a trillion dollars and what we got was 9.6% unemployment rate and housing market that's dreadful. you can argue that things are better or it's been going on for 30 years or bush administration was terrible. whatever you want to do. fact is that people think and congress is no mood to spend more money. how do you make that argument? >> i do think that there are things that can help quickly that don't cost a lot of money. there's a jobs bill sitting in the senate they'll take a hearing on in a week and a half. that will free up a lot of credit for small companies at a very low cost of capital for the government. the sba has loan programs that have been essentially on idol since the end of may because congress is not active.
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if they can get those enacted and reauthorized, billions more dollars will throw into small companies that will enable them to buy capital, buy equipment, hire employees, rent new spaces and begin the process of growing the economy. >> there wasn't a trillion dollars. it was three-quarters and it -- >> if you count the stimulus package it was three-quarters. other stuff added onto it. >> if we had done stuff in infrastructure, the more we do in infrastructure, the more jobs we create and lower the deficit. >> there was infrastructure money in the stimulus bill. >> the mistake made with that is they were short-term projects. we couldn't invest in anything taking more than 18 months and couldn't bring in private investment. that's one of the mistakes. >> you both agree that more money is needed, more federal input in terms of money will be needed to jump start the small business arena and get jobs back. >> in the short-term,
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absolutely. >> it has to be smart money. we don't throw unnecessary dollars at it but both in tax cuts and access to credit are key places. >> here is three things they can do between now and election day. we have surface transportation act reauthorization. create a lot of jobs in the process. the clean water act, the clean energy act, guaranteed loans for nuclear power, all of those would create tremendous amounts of jobs and push the deficit down at the back end. >> where do you think these jobs will be coming from when they come back? some of these may be gone forever. if you look at small business right now, you have seen -- you are seeing lean and mean machines of those that survived. they are using technology and pushing workers that they do have much higher productivity. then you look at places where usually recovery comes from contractors, housing and building contractors, that won't happen because there's all of
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these empty buildings. automakers have cut back. that's brutal in the number of workers they have cut back. where are these jobs going to come from? are they going to have to come from the government? >> no. absolutely not. they'll come from small to mid size businesses and come from clean manufacturing. green manufacturing. that is out there. there are millions of jobs to be had and at the same time we create those jobs we make ourselves more efficient as a nation. >> there are not millions of jobs now. i hear tens of thousands of green jobs. the problem is we need hundreds of thousands of green jobs and they're not there yet. 15 million. how long before we have 15 million green jobs even in small businesses? >> it will be a while. i don't think the recovery is going to be a sectoral recovery. we have to think about small businesses adding one and two and three jobs a piece across all kinds of different industries. but if they're going to do it, they have to be able to exploit
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the opportunities when they have it in front of them and to do that they have got to have access to money because to take advantage of a new opportunity, you have to hire people, buy equipment and lease space. those three things no one will wait for that. employees won't wait to get paid. vendors won't wait to get paid and landlord won't wait to get paid but the small business owner won't give their money for 60, 120 days. that's what's missing now because banks aren't lending to small companies. >> we'll come back with you and more on the economy and politics with richard trump ka and todd mccracken. with us, in spirit, was every great car that we'd ever competed with. the bmw m5. and the mercedes-benz e63. for it was their amazing abilities that pushed us to refine, improve and, ultimately, develop the world's fastest production sedan. [ engine revving ]
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treasured drove of people on the ground and knocking on doors, and one ohio organizer said when our canvassers call on the door steps, they hear glenn beck or bill o'reilly in the background. in the face of increasing gloomy national polls for democrats, richard trumka took the all politics is local at the recent news conference. >> the selection is a choice. quite frankly it will be decided race by race. workers deciding which candidate is on their side. >> the afl-cio plans to work in 26 states. it will focus on 18 senate races and 70 house races. at the polls and in the right spots, the labor vote can be pivotal. more than 60% of the union vote was for democratic candidates. still, union membership is down from its hay day.
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we are back with richard trumka, and the small business association todd mccracken. thank you for for being here. 100% seeing as we went to break was for the financial institutions to open up and make credit easier. you say to banks you gave up too much money to people that shouldn't be given it and now we're asking them to give more money. >> we have been trying to get
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money, and the proposal is we made is use money paid back and unused t.a.r.p. money and give it to regional banks so they can lend to small and mid size businesses. there is a credit crunch out there. they haven't been lending. they went the opposite way. they were too loose and then went too tight. >> i think it swung too far in one direction and now it's back in the other direction. we need to get them back in the middle. we think there are proposals on the table that help them do that. the small business lending idea we think is a smart way to start and get sba guaranteed lending going again we think is also a productive thing. it doesn't get banks that give bad loans. they have skin in the game. they won't make crazy loans but it helps small companies get the access to credit they need. >> tell us what the president
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has done right, first of all, in trying to deal with the economy, and where do you think he has gone wrong? >> first of all, he did the stimulus package. let's remember what he inherited. he inherited a banking industry or an xhi economy about to fall off the end of the cliff. he inherited a recession. he brought us back, and brought sanity back to the financial system. he has brought the economy back. he has created more jobs in this recession than george bush did in eight years as president with a surplus. >> 62,000 jobs last month is not enough. >> of course it's not enough. >> you think the stimulus package was a good idea and saved us from going off the cliff? >> i do. it was too small at the time and everybody knew it was too small, but it was all they could get passed because of republican opposition. >> what makes you think you can get anything passed against republican opposition, at this point especially since
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the country has got more and more concerned about the deficit. but secondly to my first question is what has he done wrong, do you think? >> the first thing done wrong in the stimulus package when we did infrastructure it only addressed short-term infrastructure project so we couldn't get a project that would take three or four years to complete and create a lot of jobs. they were all smaller jobs. it should have been geared toward longer stuff. more money structured toward infrastructure and helping state and local governments because what we see right now is extraordinary spending of the federal government is being negated by the contracting of the state and local government and that's why we're seeing -- >> they will look at more teachers, firefighters and policemen that are getting laid off now because those state budgets have to be balanced. >> if we hadn't given them aid, we could have lost 900,000 teachers, firefighters and police. that's not good for the country. that's not good for our children. that's not good for our future.
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>> mr. mccracken, what has the president from your point of view done right and done wrong? >> he gets the need to inject credit capital into small companies and it's the life blood of what they do. what he's been wrong is not focus on that nearly early enough. we're talking about it now in september at the end of the recession and it should have been on the table a year and a half ago. they're also talking about a payroll tax holiday of some substance. we talked about that a year and a half ago. we think we would have been in better shape. >> in all fairness to the president, the house of representatives has passed 400 bills sitting at the doorstep of the senate and because of obstructionism of the republicans right now, they haven't been able to be passed. much of what you have talked
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about were in those 400 bills that the president and democrats advocated. >> he had his hands full and was advocating something larger and other things. let me ask you something. i had two men in here who were heads of very large companies who said the president just has an anti-business tone and businesses are worried about what's coming next there's this uncertainty. do you think the president has an anti-business tone? >> i think it could be perceived that way, because a lot of things that have come out of washington in the last year, it was injecting uncertainty into the economy because it hurts job growth because you have to realize for a company adding another job is a long-term decision. it's not something they do lightly. and they have to look into the future and know what they think is coming and whether they will be able to sustain this. and the financial reform, and the health care reform, and now all of the uncertainty of what the tax policy is going to be over the next few years does sort of add to the general
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unease. there is no getting around that. >> it keeps jobs from coming. i don't want to hire because we don't know what will go on. >> wait. all of those were essential. it's unfair to say that the president is anti-business. this president has given more to tax cuts to businesses than ever before. >> he did say he saw how it could be perceived that way. >> we have no choice but to rein in wall street and rein in health care costs and no choice but to look at a tax code that rewards people for taking jobs offshore and try to reverse that. all of these things have come about because of the bad policies of the last 30 years and this president is trying to correct them. >> let me ask you about one final policy, and that is about the bush tax cuts, and they are scheduled to expire in january. this president wants to keep them for anyone that makes $250,000 per household or under.
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i want you to listen to joe biden a little bit ago on this subject. >> the only argument that our republican colleagues make is, well, this is really going to hurt small business if you don't extend the entire bush tax cuts. here are the facts. not 3% of the small businesses in america would benefit one penny in extending the top 2% tax cut. >> clear this up for us. every time we start down this tax cut thing and $250,000 mark, what we hear is this will hurt small businesses. is this overall a drain on small businesses? should the tax rates expire on those making $250,000 and up? >> we think this is the wrong time to have taxes go up for
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small companies because they do pay taxes at this rate. we think congress should at least temporarily extend -- >> for everyone? >> yes. this is the wrong time to increase taxes on anyone. there is a minority of small companies for sure but once they do that the more successful ones, and they are the ones that we want to continue to be successful. and the vice president is correct that it's only a fraction of small companies that would benefit from the tax cuts. >> and the jobs are not spread across evenly. >> it's not fair to say most of the jobs. they create some of the jobs, but not most of the jobs. >> most of the jobs within the small business industry. >> most of the jobs within small business. they're not created by the 3%. the vast majority of created by the other 97%. >> well, there is a question of job creation versus jobs that exist.
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most jobs exist in the other businesses, but the businesses that pay higher rates create most of the new jobs. depends on how you look at it. >> todd mccracken, richard trumka, thank you both. up next, what the numbers say about what president obama handling of the economy and why that could erase his democratic majority in congress. man and woman: ♪ it's the happy birthday song ♪ love, dad and ♪ love, mom ♪ it's your birthday, now, that's the bomb ♪ ♪ you're 13 and livin' strong ♪ [muffled] ♪ it's the happy birthday song ♪ what, what? ♪ it's the happy birthday song ♪ ♪ what, what? ♪ the happy... announcer: you don't have to be perfect to be a perfect parent, because kids in foster care don't need perfection. they need you.
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a raft of new numbers and analysis suggest democrats are looking at more than election year losses. here is how charlie cook sums it up. democrats find themselves heading into a midterm election that looks as grisly as any the party has faced in decades. it isn't hard to find democratic pollsters who privately concede that the numbers they are looking at now are worse than what they saw in 1994. 1994 is also known in this town as the year of the republican revolution. they picked up 54 seats in the house and eight in the senate. what the democrats needed then and what they need now is a lifeline, and it doesn't look like they will find it in the white house. the president's approval rating on handling the economy has
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plummeted from 59% last march to 40% now. the president has argued that the economy will continue to improve and would have been a lot worse had he not taken action. >> sometimes people don't remember how bad it was and how bad it could have been. >> tough sale. 32% of the americans believe the economy is better and will keep getting better. 49% say the economy is as bad or worse than two years ago. 18% say the economy is better now but will get worse soon. what's a democrat to do? we'll ask our panel next.
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joining me now here in washington, ron fournier, editor and chief of the washington journal, and michael duffy, and elisabeth bumiller of the new york times. you have been reading the stories, democrats will lose 60 seats in the house, the senate looks doable. the democrats do have more money and that counts a lot with those ads and the fact is when you look at the polling republicans don't do that much better if you generically ask if you think the republicans can handle the economy better than the democrats, et cetera, can someone argue for they this will be a minimal loss year for the democrats? >> i don't want to take that case if you are offering choices. a couple quick numbers sometimes people miss. even though democrats have more money, if you count up on the outside groups, people on the other side that you can't track, it's really two to one in the republican advantage. and some of the polls we are seeing, 50% of the public are
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identifying as independents. this is an astonishing level saying i don't care about either party, i just want something else. i am not seeing what i am looking for. of course, you are right, both now the house is not only up for grabs, and possibly beyond that, and the senate in the last couple weeks have become in play for the republicans. this looks like a much bigger tide for republicans shaping up to change, obviously, than people imagined even three months ago. >> i agree, when you look at the numbers the argument is much easier to make. when you have a 10% gap between the people who think they rather have democrats in office, which has not been that way in six decades, and the republicans are more energized. when you look at the approval rating. there are 75 democratic seats that are tossups and republicans only need 39 of them to win the house. when senator boxer, senator
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feinstein, patty murray, fighting for their lives in the senate. it's more likely than not republicans will control both houses. >> this is astonishing if you just go back two years. the republican party is dead. heavens, it will take them decades to get back in power, and here we are which tells you a lot about our skills, but what happened? is it that president obama happened? or is it that people ran out of patience on the economy or something else? it's 10% unemployment rate. democrats don't have a lot going into the next two months. the white house is rolling out a bunch of proposals. business tax credit and stuff. democrats will concede that none of this will make any difference in the economy before the election so a lot of it is politics. obama just has to get out there and talk about what they're doing. there's not a lot of places to go. right now what you see is individual candidates are ta
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tailoring their message to local issues because they can't run on the national ones which is the economy. >> yeah, and that gets me to one of my questions, and that's what is a democrat to do. i want to play you an ad on the air in new jersey, and it's put out by the candidate running against the incumbent. when new jersey familiar are fighting to make ends meet, jon runyan is trying to rip us off. >> i didn't hear health care. i didn't hear wall street reform. i didn't hear any of these things. deficit, nothing. is this where you go in yore a democrat? >> this is where you go if you're a republican.
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you can tap into the anger that is out there about the economy, the fact that a sense that a lot of voters have that nothing is working. that ad was perfect in the guy saying it's not about the issues but that everyone in washington is corrupt and not part of the solution. >> president obama with his speech in iraq, he tried to tap into that sentiment by saying i understand the fact and he used the words stormy seas or turbulent times, it's hard to see how you can maintain the american dream and make your life better. i get that. now that we've turned the page in his words on iraq, we'll focus on that. >> and the subject is the wars we are fighting are -- the republicans are not pushing back on any of the strategies in both wars.
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you are not hearing republicans call for more troops in iraq. there is some debate about the afghanistan deadline but there's not a huge human cry from the american public on that. >> when you look at this, what is the game plan for democrats? >> keep bailing as fast as you can, because you have 60 days left and all the trends are working against you. there is a chance if the president gets out and tries to maim issues and democrats do a better job than they have of making a choice between what the policies of previous eight years to now, they could probably narrow the losses that you asked about. they could maybe keep these to a minimum. they are up against a hurricane it looks like and that's all the bailing in the world can't keep up. >> you can argue that they recruited a better group of candidates, and they have been raising more money. it will be interesting to see if
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they do tough things tactically. and for example, throw incumbents over the cliff and saying we will zero the money on the people we think still have a chance. that's a tough decision they have to make if they want to stand a chance. the democratic party has shown a stomach to do that, and we'll see now. >> what's interesting is if anybody can make those decisions, it's probably nancy pelosi. >> she's already done that. she's sent out a letter saying if you're in a safe district, we need money from you from our unsafe candidates and been clear they will throw some over the cliff those that aren't doing well. >> and, yeah, rahm amanual, the two of them together, they are pretty tough. >> there are so many places in play that normally aren't. most amazing poll this week was the one that showed in ohio people would rather re-elect -- rather have george w. bush as president than barack obama by a seven-point margin. it shows you why democrats have
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to fight in places like wisconsin and washington state and even in california now those statewide seats are up for grabs in places that democrats haven't had to worry about for a decade. >> we had been told -- or at least i had been told one of the ways they were going to go after this was to say, listen, this is not about republicans versus democrats. this is about president obama and the democrats versus george bush and the republicans, with the idea that people still have such a bad taste in their mouth about george bush that that would be helpful. is it still? >> it's a fool's argument. the person that would tell them is the most famous democrat alive, bill clinton, elections are about the future and not the past. >> and that might be the democrat's problem, right? >> their hope is to go district by district and make it a choice. that's hard to do as you guys are saying in an election like this when there's a national tidal wave. this is a national election. >> especially with the feelings
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for the former president on the rise which that poll would suggest. in that iraq speech he gave, the president tipped his hat sort of, kind of, but not really, for what happened by sort of finally coming to closure on the combat troops in iraq. the president did not note a timetable that had been set in place by his predecessor. and he was unable to give him credit for that timetable which was easy to do. >> i think in connection with what you are saying, he sounded like george bush to me. he said at one point in the speech that the war accomplished to depose a leader that had terrorized his countrymen. that sounded like george bush. in a speech to troops it was a connection to the oval office speech and he said that america is more secure because of the war. again, that's george bush language he was using. >> he did not say the surge had turned things around. he never ever -- and that's a
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bridge too far. >> yeah, inside the beltway, but noted. let me put you on pause here, because when we come back, more on iraq and afghanistan, and a new push for peace in the middle east, some some of the foreign policies facing president obama. powertrain warranty. that's 40,000 more miles than ford. chevy silverado half-ton. a consumers digest best buy and the most dependable, longest lasting full-size pickups on the road. now get 0% apr for 72 months on 2010 silverado half-ton models with an average finance savings around $5,800. if you have high cholesterol, high blood pressure or diabetes, you may also have very high triglycerides -- too much fat in the blood. it's a serious medical condition. lovaza, along with diet, effectively lowers very high triglycerides in adults but has not been shown
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we're back with ron fournier, and michael duffy, and elisabeth bumiller. you just came back from afghanistan. something this week, august 24th, really caught my attention. this is from james conway who said in terms of the july 11 issue, you know i think if you follow it closely, and of course we all do, we know the president was talking to several audiences at the same time when he made his comments july 2011. in some ways we think right now is probably giving our enemy substance and saying we only have to hold out for so long. >> i'm sure that's probably what the president was looking for. you just came back from afghanistan. is that reflected in what's going on now?
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it struck me that we hear the war is going better in afghanistan. we are also hearing they are laying low. >> those comments caused concern at the white house. the marine was free throw flowing in those comments and there was blowback. right now the view -- the war is very uncertain right now. everyone is being very cautious from general petraeus, the top commander, on down. and it's -- i don't know if it's going better. it's very mixed. there are -- a lot of the country is under control, but there are trouble spots. marjah is the site of a u.s. invasion in february. there's an operation around kandahar. another major taliban strong hold in the south, and that's going very, very slowly. the concern right now among commanders is that the american people are going to lose patience, and congress is
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beginning to lose patience. >> the fact is, this president campaigned on a drawdown in iraq, check, and he campaigned on building it up in afghanistan and getting it done, check, and on pushing middle east peace, he had a blip this week, does he get political credit this year for any of those? >> you can add health care in on that, and check. the problem is when he laid down those markers between what happened now and when he started checking those boxes, 10% of the public is now out of job. 15% underemployment. it's still the economy, stupid. all these other issues get consumed by the fact that people are hurting. >> the "washington post" had a democratic strategist they quoted on friday. we did the mosque, katrina, iraq and now middle east peace and in between you redo the oval office. it has become a joke.
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>> they're not happy with how the summer has gone for all of these reasons. the line you hear tends to come from house democrats in particular is political malpractice was the line we used in "time." and i think if the president had a chance to grab the agenda, he would like to talk about the economy all the time, but a president doesn't always have that option, and that's hard sometimes for people to understand. giving a speech about iraq, at this point even if you are checking off the box, and you want to show people that your mission is defined or achieved if not accomplished, it does run the risk that you are just not where the public is. and putting the economy front and center probably is a strategy they would like to have executed. they weren't able to. we'll see if they can do that in the next 60 or 70 days or two years.
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>> is there victory in the broad sense for the president to claim in ending combat operations is probably the best way to say it. >> it was his schedule. the military pushed back against getting -- you know, going down to 50,000 troops as quickly as he wanted. there was a compromise of three months. sure, he can complaint credit forgetting down to 50,000 troops. there is a problem, of course, in that there is still violence in iraq, and while the combat mission is officially over, we know 50,000 troops, they are going to shoot back if shot at, and they are on combat patrols with iraqi forces. it's very fragile right now. there was a suicide bombing in baghdad just over the weekend. there was a wave of attacks the week before he made the speech. so i can assure you that there are no huge victory parades right now, you know, in iraq or at the pentagon. >> and given the flack president bush took about his aircraft error moment, and i was surprise -- >> it's a big speech.
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we have less than a minute left. i want to ask you a question. we saw the israeli prime minister and mahmoud abbas in the newly redone oval office. was this a big deal, a medium sized deal, a little legal in the actual peace process? >> it's a potentially big deal. hillary clinton is deeply involved for the first time in one-on-one negotiations. there's a lot of naysayers that understand why this hasn't worked for decades. conditions look better than in the past. >> once you put the secretary of state on the table in stepping up to this, you have potential to make something happen. like other things going on against a very big tide of history. >> i wonder if the characteristics that caused problems as a domestic president, a term that comes up is plotting, are those actually terms that are characteristics
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that could make him an effective diplomat. is he the guy that could bring the parties together. >> thank you all three of you very much for joining us today. we appreciate it. up next, a check of the top stories and then the overwhelming reaction to an oval office makeover. sir, have you been drinking tonight? if you ride drunk, you will get caught... and you will get arrested. so why do i have to fill out the same medical forms over and over ? ( man ) technology can tell me exactly where i am... but when it comes to my health care, why do i feel so lost ? ( announcer ) we understand your frustration. at unitedhealthcare we believe it should be simpler, and more responsive. we're 78,000 people looking out for 70 million americans. big numbers... but they're what give us the data and the experience to match you with the right doctor for your tricky condition... to guide and stand by you
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now time for a check of today's top stories. suicide bombers struck an iraqi military base in central baghdad killing at least eight people injuring 36 others. the attack comes four days after the united states officially ended its combat operations in iraq. the failed blowout preventer that triggered the bp oil well explosion in the gulf has been broult to the surface. it could hold important evidence as to what happened. the justice department took the device in custody as part of its ongoing investigation. the father of florida republican senate candidate marco rubio has died. rubio's father had been battling emphysema and lung cancer. rubio is in a three-way race
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with democrat kendrick meek and governor charlie crist who is running as an independent for florida's open senate seat. despite the sluggish economy, more americans are expected to travel this labor day weekend. aa expects 34 million will hit the roadways. that's a nearly 10% increase in holiday travel over this time last year. those are your top stories here on "state of the union." up next, amateur interior decorators across the country critique the oval office's new look. lots of discounts on car insurance. can i get in on that? are you a safe driver? yes. discount! do you own a home? yes. discount! are you going to buy online? yes! discount! isn't getting discounts great? yes! there's no discount for agreeing with me. yeah, i got carried away. happens to me all the time. helping you save money -- now, that's progressive. call or click today.
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call it this old office or maybe extreme makeover washington edition, but either way, the redo in the oval office was quite the drama this week. the audacity of taupe wrote ariana huffington. a former editor of house and garden, brown upon rest about
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oaker, drap. we're close to nation of arm chair designers. also the only thing it's missing is a lava lamp. must be very pleased to have provided that table. so is this the change we have been waiting for? there was praise. the author of a book on the kenly revamp said he liked it. at least that's what we think he said. stripes evoke a note of the modern state ala napoleon bone na part and his tented interiors that conveyed vigor and determination. a nation on the move. our research tells us beige is a calming color and maybe when israeli prime minister benjamin netanyahu and mahmoud abbas were in the oval office this week they caught the beige vibe. they did agree to meet again, after all. mostly we are out of our depth here so we want to move this discussion into the arena we know best. the new furniture is from new york. the fabric from pennsylvania.


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